Text description provided by the architects. Located at Southbank, the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre is part of a $1 billion integrated mixed-use development that includes the Hilton Hotel South Wharf, designed by Woods Bagot and NH Architecture. The triangular form of the building relates to its site, a key focal point for Melbourne’s urban axis that runs through the Central Business District, Docklands and the Yarra River.
At its core is the 5000-seat Plenary Hall, conceived as a building within a building. This fan-shaped auditorium can be divided into three separate stages and is clad in timber, reflecting the textural qualities of the location’s maritime history.
The main foyer is a focal point for public gathering, with a grand volume opening directly onto the Yarra River via a shimmering glass wall that exposes the activity and life of the centre.
In addition, a series of foyers, meeting rooms and a banquet hall were designed to reflect different aspects of Melbourne: civic spaces were inspired by the maritime precinct, hospitality spaces relate to Melbourne’s sport and culture, and functional spaces are neutral to reflect the Central Business District.